Sports

A Brief History of Marshawn Lynch Not Answering Questions

Marshawn Lynch
Marshawn Lynch: He's just here so he won't get fined. Kyle Terada/USA TODAY Sports

Marshawn Lynch, running back for the Super Bowl–bound (and defending champion) Seattle Seahawks, does not want to talk to me. But I’m not taking it personally, because Lynch also doesn’t want to talk to any employees of other media outlets.

For much of this season, Lynch ignored media questions altogether by giving short or unusual replies. The change in his media interaction came after he received a hefty fine from the NFL: He was hit was a $50,000 penalty for skipping out on postgame interviews after a Kansas City Chiefs game. The fine was then bumped up to $100,000, as he had an outstanding media violation from last season that was not enforced because he promised to speak to the press from then on out.

To avoid fines, Lynch did show up at Tuesday's Super Bowl Media Day, but he made it entirely clear he did not want to be there. Wearing sunglasses and a baseball cap indoors, Lynch answered about 30 questions over the course of five minutes with different variations of the phrase: “I’m just here so I won’t get fined.” He even stopped the press questions briefly to blow kisses to a fan and tell her she was “sexy too.” The only genuine press interaction he had was with ESPN’s Josina Anderson, when he asked her, “How are you doing Ms. Lady?” before taking the podium for questions.  

Tuesday featured one of Lynch’s more aggressive replies. After games in the past, he had sillier replies, such as an entire November press conference he spent answering almost every question “Yeah” and “Maybe.”

The next week, Lynch went with “Nope” as the go-to reply:

In December, he answered a number of questions with variations of “Thank you for asking” and “I appreciate it”:

After a January game against the Carolina Panthers, Lynch replied to most questions with “I’m thankful,” and even forewarned media that the interview was not going to go well before they started answering questions, “Y’all wanna try again, huh? Y’all are going to try again? That’s what we are going to do, we are going to try one more time?…Y’all can try all y’all want.”

Lynch isn’t totally question-averse, though. For a price, he’ll happily discuss everything from cat videos to blimps, like in this Skittles ad:

And in a Progressive Super Bowl ad, Lynch discusses saving money with car insurance after deflecting a number of ESPN reporter Kenny Mayne’s questions.

So, if you’d like to talk to Lynch, just be a brand with a lot of money to burn on a curious representative. Lynch even seemingly has spawned an imitator in the NBA, Oklahoma City's Russell Westbrook, who recently spent an entire postgame interview discussing only his "execution."

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